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Monday, August 16, 2010

HCB: Chocolate Feather-less Bed

This is what happens when you "rebel" from a recipe, you get punished. In my case, said punishment is in the shape of your cake failing. Do not let the picture above fool you. That is 6 layer of chocolate feather(less) bed, sandwiched with very thin layer of chocolate ganache.

I was so looking forward to this cake. Mostly because the picture in the book looked so appealing. Of course when one is looking forward to a cake, one is supposed to pay attention to the recipe (heck, one is supposed to do this every time). I knew I still have a bar of Scharffenberger chocolate in the freezer so I didn't get another bar of chocolate. Until on Saturday morning (baking day) I realized that the chocolate I had was 70% cacao content, instead of the 53-62% called for in the recipe. I am blaming this as the reason why the chocolate cake lost volume and turned out to be almost paper thin.

I'm not 100% sure this is the reason of course. There's only one way to prove it. Make another one! LOL! Hm... maybe for the free choice :).

As for the ganache, I had a little leftover ganache in the freezer from the Chocolate Banana Stud Cake. Looking at the ingredients, I saw that the leftover ganache was a 1:1 ratio (8 oz of chocolate to 8 oz of heavy cream). The light whipped ganache in the featherbed was a 1:2 ratio (8 oz of chocolate to 16 oz of heavy cream). So I weigh my leftover ganache - 135 gr - dumped it all in a pot, and added 68 gr of heavy cream, making it about 1:2 ratio.

I skipped the whipping part of the ganache, making this just plain ganache I suppose, and spread the ganache onto my paper thin chocolate cake.

I didn't like the sides as they look so sad and uneven. So I use made some gelatin stabilized whipped cream and decorate the side. I thought they did a pretty good job hiding the featherless quality of this cake :).

Tasting impression:
Feather or featherless, this cake taste good! It is pretty rich - with 70% cacao - but it sorta like eating a chocolate bar. And I don't mind eating a chocolate bar at this point LOL. Hubby gave it a 7.25 (he gets pretty precise with his rating), so I'd say that it's a winner. Imagine the rating if it is really feathery!

Feeling that I haven't baked enough this weekend, or rather, feeling that I need to bake something that is a success. Also completely inspired by Matthew's awesome presentation of the whole bread bible, I looked through my pantry to see what I can make. Turned out I have leftover dried cranberries from Christmas (they haven't expired yet). So I made 1/2 recipe of Flaky Cranberry Scones.

Tasting impression:
They are REALLY good! Flaky and buttery, they reminded me a of Croissant a bit. And so much easier than Croissant! Takes less than 1 hour to put together.


  1. I love how your cake looks with the whipping cream on the sides and ganache on top!

    The scones sound and look delicious.

  2. i like how you decorated the sides! sorry this didn't turn out quite right, but it sounds like what you made was still delicious. i hope you make it again! why not tonight? :)

  3. J, I have to agree with Vicki and Jennifer... I like the contrast of the dark brown of the ganache with the white of the whipped cream - this cake gave most of us a run for its money!

    I like the scones - minus the cranberries of course :)

  4. Your cake looks very good and those scones too. I wanted to reach into the computer and take one. Mmmmmmmmmmmmm!!

  5. Your cake looks beautiful! I love how you piped the sides with whipped cream! Your scones look yummy too and i want a slice of it. And i love your wood cutting board!! I find that wood board always turn yucky in our humid weather..

  6. I love the sound of your cake...7.25 rating is pretty impressive! I like the sound of eating a layered type of cake/chocolate bar :D send me some?

  7. Jenn, using a higher % chocolate was very likely the cause of the "feather-less" quality. I learned that the hard way when I made the moist chocolate genoise with higher % choc: it fell, too.

    In a recipe calling for 113g (4oz) of 60% chocolate, you can substitute 97 grams of 70% chocolate plus 16 grams of sugar.

  8. Looks to me wonderful and delicious! I am amazed you had energy and wherewithall to make scones afterwards - yum.


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